Dave Weiner’s Riff Of The Week gets even more kickass

Dave Weiner‘s excellent Riff Of The Week service is about to go subscription – from as low as just 99c per week. But more than that, Dave’s planning to kick the service up a notch by making the videos quicker and easier to digest, while also offering ‘Lick Of The Week Extended’ for those who want to go deeper. I think this is a great idea, and I know some people are already complaining to Dave that they don’t want to pay, but y’know what? This is a professional musician who has given a hell of a lot of his own time to this great service, and man, from 99c a week it’s totally worth it. He’s also about to launch something called ‘Jam With Me’ but more details on that will be announced next week.

Here’s a video from Dave explaining the changes.


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Rolling Stones – Some Girls, Live In Texas 1978

I’ve been in a particularly Stonesy mood lately. If you are too, join me in diggin’ this!


Continuing their partnership with the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band in the world, Eagle Rock Entertainment have announced the DVD and Blu-Ray release of The Rolling Stones Some Girls Live in Texas 1978. Available for the first time ever on November 21, Some Girls Live in Texas 1978 features Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood and Bill Wyman live in concert during the 1978 US tour which followed the release of their groundbreaking album Some Girls.

Some Girls Live in Texas 1978 comes hot on the heels of the huge success of 2010’s Stones in Exile and Ladies & Gentlemen and marks the next stage in the Eagle Vision / Rolling Stones enterprise. Some Girls Live in Texas 1978 will be available on four different formats: DVD, Blu-Ray, plus special edition DVD + CD and Blu-Ray + CD digipack presentations including a reproduction tour program. Bonus features on all formats will include a new interview with Mick Jagger.

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COOL GEAR ALERT: MXR Custom Badass Modified Overdrive

YES! One of my favourite pedals this year – earning itself an instant place in my live rig as the heart of my lead sound – is the MXR Custom Badass ’78 Distortion. You can see my review here. Well that little red monster now has a slightly tamer but no less rockworthy brother in the form of the Modified Overdrive. Check it out!


Last year, we unveiled the MXR Custom Badass line of classic circuits fine-tuned to deliver a wider tonal spectrum, more versatility and increased dynamic range. The ’78 Distortion debuted as the first Custom Badass offering and was an instant hit. Guitar World Magazine said it was “as wild and raunchy as music was back in hard rock’s glory days,” offering “the versatility and low-noise performance that today’s players demand.”

This year, the Custom Badass team brings you the MXR Custom Badass line is the Modified Overdrive—a classic overdrive circuit with modern modifications for improved performance and versatility.

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REVIEW: DigiTech iPB-10

Check out the latest programmable pedalboard from Digitech. Nice display, huh? I don’t think I’ve ever seen a multi effects unit with a display that big. Wait a minute, is that… nah, it couldn’t be… wait, it is! Well I’ll be! The iPB-10 actually holds an iPad, clutching the groundbreaking Apple tablet device to its metallic bosom like, well, like I did when I got my iPad a few weeks ago. DigiTech knows that multi effect units – even their own – have always suffered from cramped screens, but a full-colour, oversized display would be prohibitively expensive to add to such a device. With the iPB-10, DigiTech lets Apple take care of that aspect so they can focus on what they do best: making kickass effects and amp simulations.

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My interview with Del Marquis from Scissor Sisters

Hey! I just interviewed Del Marquis – guitarist from Scissor Sisters – for Beat magazine. You can check it out here. There are some really cool insights into what it takes to play for a band like Scissor Sisters – including the enviable indulgence of getting to use a different guitar for every song live. Jealous! We also talked about his forthcoming solo album recorded with members of Prince’s original New Power Generation, which will no doubt be super funky and awesome. So go show Beat some love!


AMT Electronics SS-11A, SS11B & SS-10 preamps

This triumvirate of AMT Electronics preamps share a lot of common features, providing slight but essential differences for the discerning player. ie: obsessive tone geeks like you and I.


First let’s check out the SS-11A and SS-11B preamps. These fully valve-based 4-stage overdrive pedals each feature twin 12AX7 preamp tubes with three separate channels – Clean, Overdrive and Lead, the latter two appearing under a shared ‘Drive’ category. You can select between Clean and Drive with the chunky footswitch on the left, and toggle between Crunch and Lead with the right switch. There’s no bypass, but this unit is not designed to be used like an on/off distortion pedal. Each pedal has an effects loop which is always engaged. The pedals are designed to be used as a true preamp – that is, either feeding an amp’s power amp via a preamp input/effects loop return jack, or feeding an actual rackmounted power amp. There’s also a switch to select between amp and mixer outputs, so you can crank these babies through your desk either live or in the studio. The mixer output features a transistor-based guitar cabinet impulse response emulator to provide a natural-feeling response. I tested the pedals both ways – through a Marshall DSL50 and various AVID Mboxes – and the results were great either way. Recordists will appreciate the ‘plug in and simply sound great’ nature of the emulated out, while live players will dig the ability to completely revoice their amp by effectively excising their existing preamp and replacing it with one of these bad boys.

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